My Experience Selling My Car to Carvana: A Step-by-Step Guide on How Carvana Works

How Does Carvana Work

For many people, the process of selling a car feels like a major burden. Often, you get stuck having to haggle with dealerships or private buyers, neither of which is particularly appealing. Fortunately, Carvana offers an alternative, using a straightforward and fast process to make selling your car simple. If you’re wondering, “How does Carvana work?” here’s what you need to know.

How Does Carvana Work?

When you’re selling your car, the process at Carvana is incredibly simple. Head to the company’s website, go to the Sell/Trade page, and enter your car’s license plate or VIN information. You can choose whether you want a quote based on selling the vehicle or using it as a trade-in, which can work well if you also intend to purchase a car from Carvana.

After that, you’ll take a minute or two to provide extra information. You’ll need to put in your current mileage, the vehicle’s color, the engine type, and specific other details about the car’s features. Then, you input some information about the vehicle’s condition, such as whether there’s any damage or if it was previously involved in an accident. There’s also a spot to put in details about any existing auto loans on the vehicle.

Once you finish providing the information, you can provide your email address and get your offer. In many cases, Carvana can give you an instant offer within a few moments. If that isn’t possible, you’ll get notified that the offer is pending. Then, you can let Carvana know if you want to move forward.

If you choose to sell, you’ll have to complete some additional steps. Carvana will need a photo of your current odometer reading and the vehicle title. Additionally, you’ll have to upload a picture of your driver’s license or similar photo ID.

You also have to let Carvana know if you’d prefer a printed check, instant payment to your debit card, or direct deposit into your bank account, and you’ll have to provide any necessary details to get the payment. After that, you can schedule a pickup appointment.

At the time of pickup, a Carvana employee will inspect the vehicle to make sure your description is accurate. If so, they’ll handle any remaining paperwork and process your payment right then, and your car is officially sold.

What You Should Do Before Selling Your Car to Carvana

If you like the idea of a convenient process for selling your car, Carvana is probably a pretty appealing option. However, the process is incredibly fast, and there isn’t much you technically need to do to complete it. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some steps you should take before moving forward.

First, you want to spend some time on research. Use a variety of tools – such as the value calculators at Kelley Blue Book or Edmunds – to see what your vehicle is worth. That helps you determine if the offer made by Carvana is competitive.

With a service like Carvana, you may receive a bit less, but that’s potentially offset by the outstanding convenience the process provides. However, if the price difference is substantial, going in another direction may be worth the hassle.

Second, you need to spend time honestly assessing the condition of your car. Carvana will ask you to provide some basic details about your vehicle’s current condition, and an honest, accurate assessment is a critical part of the equation.

Finally, make sure you have account information on any auto loan that lists the vehicle as collateral. If you don’t have it readily available, take a moment to look it up before moving through the Carvana process.

Can You Haggle When Selling Your Car to Carvana?

Haggling isn’t an option if you sell your car to Carvana. Any offer the company presents is firm and final, so you can’t ask for an adjustment unless you find that a piece of information you provided was inaccurate.

Similarly, Carvana doesn’t have a price-match policy. Even if you get a better offer elsewhere, don’t expect Carvana to match it.

It is critical to note that Carvana may change its offer during the pickup inspection. If the representative determines that the car is in worse condition than you listed on the website, then you may not qualify for the originally offered amount. As a result, accuracy is critical when you provide details about the vehicle.

Does Carvana Pay You the Most for a Used Car?

Generally, Carvana’s offers are in line with what other online car dealerships will usually present. However, that doesn’t mean you’re getting the most for your used vehicle. In many cases, the prices are lower than what you’d see if you sold your car privately. Additionally, physical dealerships may offer you more.

But the slightly lower offer could be worth considering if you’re looking for a convenient way to sell your vehicle. When you go through Carvana, you never have to drive to a dealership or deal with negotiating. Instead, Carvana has firm offers, and they’ll come to you to pick the car up, making the entire process fast and straightforward.

Still, you may want to explore alternatives, including other online dealerships that can pick up your vehicle if you sell it to them. Pricing will vary from one dealer to the next, so it never hurts to go through the initial offer steps at different ones to see which one can give you the best price.

Have you used Carvana and want to further answer the question, “How does Carvana work?” If you’ve used Carvana, do you think it was a worthwhile option, or did you have a bad experience? Do you think people are better off selling their cars another way? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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